Anyone who has seen shows by the professional ensembles from former Yugoslavia will recognize this dance and the tune to it, presented as “Shota”. Originally, it is a dance from the ancient Illyrian civilization but the dance represents two things.
Firstly, it was an idyllic dance for a woman and a man, to show their genuine interest in each other. At first, the woman is teasing the man, then he pretends he isn’t interested in her. But in the end, the man receives the woman’s scarf, representing her innocence and love. The man finally accepts and occasionally, the he returns her scarf.
The Albanian name of this dance is “Vallja e Shotës” simply translating to the Dance of the Duck. Shota, in Kosovo dialect, is the name of a wild duck. This shouldn’t be a surprise considering the energetic movements and the lyrics to the song.
The second use of the song was later on, adapted for the female freedom fighter, Shota Galicës, wife of the freedom fighter Azem Betem Galicës. For Kosovo and Albania, she has a status as one of the people who fought for independence, in the year 1919 and onwards and was declared “The People’s Hero” by the Albanian government after WWII.
She dressed up as a man and fought alongside her husband in the struggle against the Turks and Serbians. “Shota” was also a nickname for her, as her real name was Qerime Radisheva (1895 – 1927).
The original Illyrian text of the song of the Shota was very short:
Hajde shote marshalla flutoro me krah (x2),
Luj, luj shtatin, eh, ta fala sahatin, eh (x2),
Hajde shote nga Malesia fer, fer, fer pot ban shamia (x2),
Luj, luj doren, oh, ta fala kunoren, (x2),
Luj, luj gishtin, oh, se ma dogje shpirtin (x2).
Come now shote, marshallah, fly with your wings (x2),
Move, move your body, I’ll give you my attention, eh (x2),
Come now shote from the highlands, how your handkerchief waves (x2),
Move, move your hands, oh, I’ll give you my crown (x2)
Move, move your fingers, oh, how you’ve burned my soul (x2).
I would definitely have placed the link to the music but the comments there just totally ruin it :/
If you still want to listen to it, search YouTube for: Hajde Shote Marshallah. :)